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The Climate is Hitting Back: The Pentagon has already begun to feel the negative impacts of wreaking such havoc on the environment, as massive flooding and extreme weather events like Hurricane Michael have cost the administration billions in repairs for military bases. Droughts, wildfires, desertification and rising sea levels are already interfering in the way the Pentagon operates in terms of training, construction, and deployment. In the Arctic, the melting of glaciers is opening up previously closed sea routes and creating increased geopolitical competition and conflict over the waters and their natural resources. Climate change is severely undermining our military readiness, but our Department of Defense is only making it worse.
The U.S. Response? In 2018, military spending in the U.S. reached an all-time high since 2010, with a 4.6% annual increase that added up to $649 billion. Rather than reducing our emissions and developing more fuel-efficient technologies, thus enabling our military to better protect the U.S. from future disasters, White House officials are attempting to further increase military spending for fiscal 2020.
Why This Matters: The Navy under the Obama Administration and the leadership of former Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus worked hard to create a steady supply of biofuels for Navy jets, but there needs to be a huge leap in that supply in order to replace fossil fuels, of which jet fuel is the largest category. Military installations have great potential to develop solar power too. There is also money to be saved – the Pentagon is the largest single purchaser of fossil fuels in the world – switching to renewable fuels will save the Pentagon big bucks. But what is needed is a commitment to reduce the military’s greenhouse gas emissions and a deadline for the Defense Department to reach carbon neutrality. This is a key part of Senator Elizabeth Warren and Vice President Joe Biden’s climate plans.
By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer There’s been a three-fold increase in climate targets by Fortune Global 500 companies over the past three years, but more than 60% still don’t have any commitments on the books. That’s according to numbers from Natural Capital Partners, who led a discussion with leaders from some of the companies […]
By Amy Lupica, ODP Daily Editor Just a month and a half after the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported a “code red” for the world to combat climate, the UN announced on Friday that recent climate action plans submitted by 191 countries won’t come close to limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees […]
This week is Climate Week NYC, an annual event hosted by The Climate Group and the United Nations, in partnership with the COP26 and the City of New York. For one week, from September 20-26, experts will be hosting panels and conversations about all things climate, and you can follow along at home via Facebook […]
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